Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Saga Continues: Bellafante Responds

Ginia Bellafante has responded to the outcry against her on The New York Times blog ArtBeat.  Instead of addressing the fact that she repeatedly slammed female fantasy fans, she decided to bemoan how roughly she was treated and ended the post with the very condescending and sarcastic:

"Given that so many people wrote in advance of seeing “Game of Thrones,” we would love to know what all of the Martin series lovers think of the adaptation so far."
I'm sure Miss Bellafante thought she was making a solid point about being attacked for her feelings on "Game of Thrones" when her attackers themselves hadn't even seen the finished product.  The problem is that few people were upset that she didn't like the show.  The women (and several of the men) who took issue with her review were incensed by her blatant claims that women are not fantasy fans and would not be interested in the show unless it included romance or sex.  They were upset that she didn't take the time to find out who was included in the fanbase of the genre, the series in question, or the upcoming show.  As I said before, if she would have spent fifteen minutes on the internet, there would have been no need to comment on the lack of female fans.

Ultimately, though, the biggest issue with Bellafante's review is that it is not a review at all.  She doesn't discuss the show in any detail, preferring instead to dismiss the genre as a whole.  The most she said about "Game of Thrones" specifically had to do with how "confusing" it was and how there were too many characters.  I enjoy writing reviews, but other than the ones I do here, I've only written a few for my school newspaper.  Even I know, however, that it is important to include plot points, characters, and to discuss the actual show in a well-written review.  A review is not a diatribe about how you don't "get" fantasy and that a fantasy show won't translate well to mainstream viewers. 

As others have said, if Miss Bellafante is not a fantasy fan (or, at the very least, open minded), perhaps she was not the right person to review "Game of Thrones".  She is a woman and a journalist, however, and she has a responsibility to represent both in an exemplary fashion, particularly when she is writing for a prestigious and widely read newspaper.  In this, she failed miserably.  In regards to her unapology, I say, "It's not good enough."

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